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New WWF Podcast Showcases Innovative Efforts To Save World's Wild Places, Species

WASHINGTON, DC, June 1, 2009 – World Wildlife Fund has launched a podcast series to tell the stories of scientists, researchers and others on the frontlines of the struggle to preserve the natural world. The podcast, called “The Wild Things,” will be written and produced by award-winning journalist John Nielsen, formerly an environment correspondent at National Public Radio.

“The Wild Things” is a biweekly audio podcast that will feature first-hand stories about innovative efforts to conserve endangered species and places. It will also feature news and eyewitness accounts of the damage done by threats like climate change, illegal logging and the multi-billion-dollar black market for rare plants and animals. “The Wild Things” will focus on the innovative ways WWF is tackling some of these problems, reporting on everything from major smuggling busts to the creation of “sacred forests.”

WWF is the world’s leading conservation organization, with field projects in 100 countries. John Nielsen is a recipient of the “Excellence in Science Writing” award presented by the American Academy for the Advancement of Science. He is also the author of “Condor: To the Brink and Back. The Life and Times of a Giant Bird,” which was named the Best Natural History Book of 2006 by the National Outdoor Book Association.

“We’re excited to have a journalist of John Nielsen’s caliber leading our digital storytelling,” said Ginette Hemley, WWF’s senior vice president for conservation science and strategy.

In the new edition of “Wild Things,” launched today, listeners will discover how climate change is putting hundreds of thousands of people in the Himalayas at risk from massive flooding, how elephant experts in Sumatra convinced global coffee companies to help protect a World Heritage site and what happened when researchers uncovered thousands of illegal sea turtle souvenirs in the Caribbean.

“Ever wonder how scientists count orangutans in the deepest jungles of Borneo? Or how wildlife trafficking experts persuade governments to take action to crack down on illegal trade?” Nielsen asks. “The Wild Things explores the thankless, messy and wildly creative work done every day by a heroic group of conservationists – the ones who do much more than talk about saving the world.”

“The Wild Things” can be downloaded from www.worldwildlife.org/wildthings and the World Wildlife Fund channel on iTunes.